Apple Watch 6 release date, price, news and features

The Apple Watch 6 is official, and it’s the company sixth generation smartwatch that launched alongside a new cheaper alternative – the Apple Watch SE – and a flurry of new iPad products.

There wasn’t an iPhone 12, but instead we got the iPad Air 4 and a new cheaper iPad. 

Below, we’ll take you through all the core details of the Apple Watch 6 including specs and updates that Apple has revealed at its big event.

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? The next wearable from Apple
  • When is it out? Friday, September 18
  • What will it cost? $399 / £379 (about AU$649)

Apple Watch 6 release date and price

The Apple Watch 6 was unveiled at the company’s Time Flies event on September 15, 2020, which was a live streamed virtual event due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

You’re able to pre-order the Apple Watch 6 from today, and the smartwatch will be out on Friday, September 18. 

The Apple Watch 6 will start at $399 / £379 / AU$599 for the 40mm version, and the 44mm version starts at $429 / £409 / AU$649. If you want an LTE-ready watch, the 40mm starts at $499 / £479 / AU$749 with the 44mm starting at $529 / £509 / AU$799.

Apple Watch 6 design and display

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Don’t expect the Apple Watch 6 to look all that different to the Apple Watch 4 or Apple Watch 5. The company is keeping the same design ethos for the Apple Watch 6, but there are some changes in terms of colors available.

It now includes a new blue aluminum case as well as a gold version of the stainless steel variant. There’s also a black graphite variant, and a red version for the first time.

It’ll be available in both 44mm and 40mm sizes like the last couple of Apple Watch generations too.

The always-on display is back, and it’s been improved for the Apple Watch 6. Apple says the always-on mode is 2.5x brighter than previously, which should make it easier to see in different lighting conditions.

Plus, you can access the Notification Center, Control Center, change watch faces, and tap on complications from the always-on display, without having to fully wake the watch.

Apple also announced a variety of new band types, including new colors for existing straps. There are two new band styles called the Solo Loop and the Braided Solo Loop, both of which don’t have clasps, allowing you to stretch the band over your wrist.

Apple Watch 6 fitness

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There’s a new health sensor in the watch that allows you to monitor your blood oxygen levels. It all works through the Blood Oxygen app, which can take a reading within 15 seconds.

The watch can also take background readings, so you’ll be able to get results while you sleep or throughout the day. Those results will allow you to look out for low blood oxygen levels, which could be an indication of underlying health problems.

There doesn’t seem to be much more in the way of new fitness features on the Apple Watch itself, but you’ll get all the existing features and workouts that you’ve seen on previous smartwatches from the company.

Apple Watch 6 power and battery

Apple has included a new S6 processor in the smartwatch, which is up to 20% faster than the Watch 5’s chipset.

On top of that, Apple also claims you get 18 hours of battery life (the same as the Apple Watch 5) but with faster charging, letting you juice it up in under 1.5 hours.

There’s also an always-on altimeter on the new smartwatch, which provides you with real-time elevation data throughout your day. Apple says it’ll even detect small elevation changes down to a measurement of one foot.

Apple Watch 6 software

Of course, the Apple Watch 6 will also come with a new version of the company’s software on board, specifically watchOS 7, which was unveiled back in June 2020.

With new workouts, streamlined complications, sleep tracking, hand washing tracking, and more, there’s a lot planned.

Sleep tracking is perhaps the biggest update here, and suggests that the Apple Watch 6 may come with specific features that will be better at handling that than its predecessors.

WatchOS 7 can now also monitor VO2 Max numbers, which means it’ll give you a notification to say if your blood oxygen is low.

Apple Watch 6 watch faces

Seven new watch faces are coming with Apple Watch 6 – here’s a list of them, along with images:

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The Artist face (Image credit: Apple)
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The Memoji face (Image credit: Apple)
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The Chronograph Pro face (Image credit: Apple)
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The Typograph face (Image credit: Apple)
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The GMT face (Image credit: Apple)
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Apple Watch 6

The Countup face (Image credit: Apple)
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Apple Watch SE

The Stripes face (Image credit: Apple)
  • GMT
  • Countup
  • Chronograph Pro
  • Typograph
  • Artist
  • Memoji
  • Stripes

Note that these are part of watchOS 7, so won’t be exclusive to the new Apple Watch. The new software also lets you share your watch face configurations with other people.

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